Dog Living In Parked Van For Weeks Sparks Concern, City Officials Say No Laws Have Been Broken

Concerned citizens have flooded their mayor’s office and humane society with calls about a dog living in a parked van behind a car wash. The golden retriever is being kept in a parked minivan and has been living in the vehicle for weeks with windows rolled down slightly to give the dog air.

However, neighbors say something needs to be done, as the dog’s owner does not take the dog out for walks and only moves the van from the parking lot for a few minutes every day. However, city officials and the humane society say their hands are tied as the dog is not “in distress” and has proper amounts of water. Despite officials claiming the dog is not in danger, citizens have started a petition demanding that the confined pooch is cared for.

Global News reports that the golden retriever was first spotted in the parked minivan in Edmonton, Canada, about three weeks ago. Since the discovery, concerned neighbors have been watching the dog through the van’s windows. According to witnesses in the area, the dog lives in the van, and the owner of the vehicle is rarely with the dog. Reports indicate that the dog owner moves the van for just a few minutes every day, leaving the dog completely confined to the minivan for the rest of the day.

According to the Huffington Post, when one neighbor saw the dog panting heavily in the confined space, 911 was called, and firefighters were deployed to the area. However, fire officials determined the dog was not “in distress,” so nothing could be done. In fact, the Humane Society of Edmonton told a local newspaper that nothing could be done for the confined dog as the owner is actually “doing everything right.”

“He’s not harming the dog in any way. He’s leaving the window open, he’s leaving water in there for the dog. He’s actually doing everything right.”

With calls flooding into Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson’s office, the mayor made a public response regarding the dog’s condition to his Facebook account. Iveson noted that living in a van “is not a desirable situation for this dog” but that “the Edmonton Humane Society has the jurisdiction over the Animal Protection Act and is responsible for enforcement of it.” He noted that according to the Humane Society, the dog was not in immediate distress as it had fresh water in the vehicle and the windows were rolled down.

“This is not a desirable situation for this dog and we are actively assisting the Edmonton Humane Society in seeking a positive resolution to this. On this issue, the Edmonton Humane Society has the jurisdiction over the Animal Protection Act and is responsible for enforcement of it. The City of Edmonton, Edmonton Police Service and Edmonton Fire Department are assisting the Edmonton Human Society where they can. The Mayor’s Office has spoken with Animal Control department and they advise that the windows are open providing fresh air for the dog and that it is well and not in distress. Thank you for your concerns and input as we work with the proper officials in addressing this issue.”

Meanwhile, citizens in the area say something needs to be done for the dog and have started an online petition demanding that action be taken for the dog’s well-being. The petition had over 6,000 signatures at the time of this posting.

What do you think of the humane society’s declaration that the dog is “not in distress?”

[Image Credit: Facebook via Global News]